Published in Issue 470 of The Black Commentator on May 3, 2012
By Larry Pinkney

“I freed a thousand slaves – I could have freed a thousand more if only they knew they were slaves.”
–Harriet Tubman

Are we hamsters running endlessly on a spinning wheel, oblivious to the fact that we are substantively going nowhere but backwards? Or, are we reasoning, critically thinking human beings who have enough sense to comprehend the enormous difference between being on a perpetually spinning wheel, and making real systemic change that serves the needs and aspirations of ordinary people?

The time is here and now for everyday, ordinary Black, White, Brown, Red, and Yellow people to address and honestly answer this question. We must take responsibility for our collective destinies.

The political system of the United States really is one wherein the following words, attributed to Charlie King, so thoroughly apply: “America is a melting pot, the people at the bottom get burned while all the scum floats to the top.” The obvious question is why? Why is this allowed to continue? The answer is not complicated. It is the denial, self delusion, lethargy, and hypocrisy on the part of far too many people in this nation — stoked and perpetuated — by the corporate-owned Democratic and Republican parties, the corporate-stream ‘news’ media, and their concomitant systemic ‘educational’ institutions. The scum does not float to the top by osmosis. It is quite deliberate.

Nevertheless, this grim scenario does not have to remain in place. The revolving door of systemic insanity can be eliminated and discarded, but only by us, ordinary everyday people. It’s not going to happen unless and until everyday Black, White, Brown, Red, and Yellow people in this nation become fed up with being endlessly divided, systemically pimped, and treated as if we are caged hamsters, endlessly running on a perpetually spinning wheel.

It’s time to call out, for what and who they really are, those so-called ‘liberals’ and ‘progressives’ who rightfully and vigorously organized and protested against the U.S. wars, internal political repression, and economic emaciation of everyday people by the Republican party Bush/Cheney regime, but whose silence is deafening when it comes to the outrageous abuses (both internally and externally) of the current corporate-owned, predator-drone missile, Democratic party occupant of the White House, who has far surpassed (in less than four years) the scandalous actions of his predecessor. It’s time to understand that these alleged ‘liberals’ and ‘progressives’ are HYPOCRITES who are showing that they are, in reality, systemic gatekeepers, perpetuating the revolving door of the Democratic and Republican party insanity of this system.

Suddenly, it apparently does not seem to matter to these hypocrites that trillions of dollars of the people’s money was criminally given to the elite Wall Street bloodsuckers, or that the horror of Guantanamo continues, or that ‘extraordinary rendition’ continues, or that U.S. wars are raging in Afghanistan, Pakistan, etc., or that the U.S. bombed Libya, North Africa, or that the unconstitutional ‘Patriot Act’ (which in essence codifies into law the U.S. government’s infamous COINTELPRO horrors) has been renewed and still stands, or even that the current White House occupant has signed into law the reality of indefinite detention (NDAA) of U.S. citizens inside this nation, without charge or due process. This is why the “scum” repeatedly “floats to the top” in the rigged political system in the United States. Wake up people! Unchain your minds while there is yet time!

Remember well the words of Harriet Tubman when she said, “I freed a thousand slaves – I could have freed a thousand more if only they knew they were slaves.”

To reiterate: The denial, self delusion, lethargy, and hypocrisy of far too many people (including many so-called ‘liberals’ and ‘progressives’) in this nation is precisely why this revolving door of systemic insanity continues unabated, and the people of all colors in this nation stay on the euphemistic and insidious political plantation of powerlessness.

We must stop being fooled and sucked in by the bait-and-switch tactics and fake left/right paradigm of the corporate owned Democratic and Republican parties. They are not friends or allies of the everyday people, no matter what lies spew forth from their lips through their corporate-stream media.

Organize, agitate, educate! Each one, reach one. Each one, teach one. Cherish and protect our Mother Earth! Onward, then, my sisters and brothers. Onward!

Larry Pinkney is a veteran of the Black Panther Party, the former Minister of Interior of the Republic of New Africa, a former political prisoner and the only American to have successfully self-authored his civil/political rights case to the United Nations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. In connection with his political organizing activities, Pinkney was interviewed in 1988 on the nationally televised PBS News Hour, formerly known as The MacNeil/Lehrer News Hour. Pinkney is a former university instructor of political science and international relations, and his writings have been published in various places, including The Boston Globe, San Francisco BayView newspaper, Black Commentator, Intrepid Report, Global Research (Canada), LINKE ZEITUNG (Germany), 107Cowgate (Ireland and Scotland), and Mayihlome News (Azania/South Africa). He is in the archives of Dr. Huey P. Newton (Stanford University, CA), cofounder of the Black Panther Party. For more about Larry Pinkney see the book, Saying No to Power: Autobiography of a 20th Century Activist and Thinker, by William Mandel [Introduction by Howard Zinn]. (Click here to read excerpts from the book.)


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